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Mah Jongg meets Gin Rummy! Themed with Chinese zodiac imagery, this fast-paced, set-making card game finds players battling to accumulate 200 points over several rounds of play! Use your Forbidden cards to stop your opponents or multiply your score. Watch out! If you're caught with them in your hand at the end of the round, you lose points. In Forbidden, the best cards are the most dangerous!
That's all I can say really, this is a great game and if your a fan of Rummy and/or mahjong (or cardgames in general) this is an excellent choice to try out.
When you first glance at the rules, it seems rather difficult, but once you've played through it a time or two, you get the flow.
The basic part of collecting sets and runs is the easiest part of the game -- even easier than in Rummy since both sets and runs can only be things of the same color -- it's quite easy to organize your hand.
There are a variety of other cards that twist up the gameplay. A couple examples: The Rooster gives you more points, the Monkey gives you a couple extra cards at the end of the hand.
The titular "Forbidden" cards are kind of nifty. You can only 'go out' if you have exactly zero or two of them. If you have two of them when you go out, it doubles your score. If you have any in your hand and another person 'goes out', they deduct from your score. You have to weigh the risk as you play.
There are wild cards that are very helpful. And there is a sort of psuedo-wild -- any "6" card can also be used as a "9". I thought it a clever idea. And those are powerful cards -- flexible, and each one gives you a 5 point bonus.
The other twist on 'standard' card games is that each player has their OWN discard pile. On your turn, you can draw from any OTHER discard pile, but not your own. If you do draw from a discard pile, you have to use that card in a set immediately.
If you like Rummy-ish games, and you don't mind the slight cramp of holding a hand of THIRTEEN cards, this is a worthwhile game to have. Enough classic gameplay concepts to pick it up quickly, with plenty of twists to make it seem fresh and new.
This is a game we often take to coffee shops... it's one of those "OK, just ONE MORE game!" games.